cakegirl1973 Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 3:24pm
post #1 of

Hello! Whenever I stack my cakes, I have problems getting my fingers out from underneath the cake and always seriously mess up the icing (thank goodness for Viva!) Yesterday, I tried using a spatula and that seemed to be just as bad. Where should my hands be when I'm stacking a cake? I feel like I am missing something here and that there has got to be a better way. Any tips? TIA!

21 replies
platinumlady Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 4:03pm
post #2 of

I use a cake lifter It helps me slide the cake into place & not mess up the bottom layer

Mug-a-Bug Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 4:47pm
post #3 of

Stacking buttercream is a circus act. Sharon Z's successful stacking DVD is great. It just requires practice like anything else. Good buttercream repairing techniques are also helpful.

No, you're not missing any 'secrets'. Good luck icon_rolleyes.gif

Rosie2 Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 5:27pm
post #4 of

Agree with Platinumlady. I just got the 'cake lifter' and it works like a charm. The cake slides perfectly...you may still need to fix little areas but nothing major. Good luck!

cmehend Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 5:43pm
post #5 of

Yes, the cake lifter. One of the best things that I have bought!

CWR41 Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 5:45pm
post #6 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by cakegirl1973

Where should my hands be when I'm stacking a cake?




One hand on the spatula and one hand underneath the cake (on its own cake circle) supporting the weight.

If you're using SPS, you can lower one side of the tier onto the plate, remove your hand, slide the tier into place across the plate with your spatula, lower the cake the rest of the way, and remove your spatula.

If you aren't using SPS, it helps with positioning if you're placing your tier onto another cake circle (just as you would with a single plate separator). So rather than trying to lower it on top of a buttercream surface (while denting the lower cake, trying to get your hand and spatula out without making a mess, and possibly disturbing the dowels), you're lowering it onto a corrugated cake circle instead that's already stuck in place on the surface of the lower tier. Doubling up on circles is easier than risking damage and causing internal support issues, and you'll still be able to hammer a center dowel through all tiers without a problem.

FromScratchSF Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 7:47pm
post #7 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by CWR41

If you aren't using SPS, it helps with positioning if you're placing your tier onto another cake circle (just as you would with a single plate separator). So rather than trying to lower it on top of a buttercream surface (while denting the lower cake, trying to get your hand and spatula out without making a mess, and possibly disturbing the dowels), you're lowering it onto a corrugated cake circle instead that's already stuck in place on the surface of the lower tier. Doubling up on circles is easier than risking damage and causing internal support issues, and you'll still be able to hammer a center dowel through all tiers without a problem.




icon_eek.gificon_surprised.gificon_eek.gificon_surprised.gificon_eek.gificon_surprised.gif

I think I just had my DUH! moment of the week.

What a great freakin idea. So simple, yet sounds like JUST the answer for me - I use SMBC and stacking is a PIMA, and fixing big 'ole finger dents is not easy!!!

Thank you!!!

jenscreativity Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 8:17pm
post #8 of

When you say doubling up the board,,,do you mean put the board on layer then another board under the cake, then when you stack,,you place the cake on the board that is already on the layer?? Hope you know what I mean..thanks!

Kitagrl Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 8:26pm
post #9 of

The absolute best way is to chill your iced cakes and then stack when they are cold and firm. Use a flat spatula and your hands to position it....then slide the spatula out from under the tier when its in place. You can use the end of the spatula to nudge the cake here and there to center it. If your cake is nice and cold, and your supports put in correctly, you should be able to stack, and even adjust the centering, without messing up the icing.

Cold fondant cakes are even easier to stack...if you work quickly, you can even just nudge it around by hand until its centered correctly.

CWR41 Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 11:10pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by jenscreativity

When you say doubling up the board,,,do you mean put the board on layer then another board under the cake, then when you stack,,you place the cake on the board that is already on the layer?? Hope you know what I mean..thanks!




I guess. (I wouldn't describe it as a layer... it's the top surface of the tier that you're stacking upon.)

You do the same as if using a separator plate except it's corrugated cardboard... just smear some BC on it first. (it doesn't need to be the same size circle either, it can be smaller.)

If you just drop it or let it lower itself on dowels that aren't pushed all the way into the cake and then discover that it isn't correctly centered, you'll risk pushing the dowels over when sliding the cake over into its correct position.

Marianna46 Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 11:30pm

I've always had this same question when stacking. The two-circle idea is great!

Mug-a-Bug Posted 2 Mar 2011 , 2:45pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by FromScratchSF

Quote:
Originally Posted by CWR41

If you aren't using SPS, it helps with positioning if you're placing your tier onto another cake circle (just as you would with a single plate separator). So rather than trying to lower it on top of a buttercream surface (while denting the lower cake, trying to get your hand and spatula out without making a mess, and possibly disturbing the dowels), you're lowering it onto a corrugated cake circle instead that's already stuck in place on the surface of the lower tier. Doubling up on circles is easier than risking damage and causing internal support issues, and you'll still be able to hammer a center dowel through all tiers without a problem.



icon_eek.gificon_surprised.gificon_eek.gificon_surprised.gificon_eek.gificon_surprised.gif

I think I just had my DUH! moment of the week.

What a great freakin idea. So simple, yet sounds like JUST the answer for me - I use SMBC and stacking is a PIMA, and fixing big 'ole finger dents is not easy!!!

Thank you!!!





WHAT!!! OMG! Cannot beleive I haven't heard of this idea! icon_eek.gif Wow, thanks for sharing. I thought I knew all the 'secrets' but I guess not!

ycknits Posted 2 Mar 2011 , 2:54pm

I couldn't live without my cake lifter, and use it for disassembling layer cakes when serving, as well icon_smile.gif

indydebi Posted 2 Mar 2011 , 6:20pm

"How to assemble a stacked cake" ..... with photos:

http://cateritsimple.blogspot.com/2011/01/how-to-assemble-stacked-wedding-cake.html

Tclanton Posted 2 Mar 2011 , 7:25pm

This method can be done with bubble tea straws or dowels. Keep in mind dowels will sink quicker.

Once you have put either in place and cut to fit - so to speak - dont push them all the way back down into the cake. Leave about half protruding above the surface. Center your cake as best you can and let the cake slide down and push your supports back into place.

EvMarie Posted 2 Mar 2011 , 8:06pm

So - say you are stacking your tiers. And, you end up with some "dings". So...if you're cakes are iced & chilled & you have repairs. .... Doesn't it look bad to repair crusted buttercream?

This is the main reason why I have confidence issues with stacking. Viewing Indy's pic tutorial...I'm shocked to find that I'm actually doing it right. Now I find....the "fix it" skills are lacking. Which is fabulous cuz I was seriously frustrated.

Anyone have thoughts on this?

Jody130 Posted 2 Mar 2011 , 8:43pm

Where can you order the cake lifters from??

FromScratchSF Posted 2 Mar 2011 , 9:45pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by indydebi

"How to assemble a stacked cake" ..... with photos:

http://cateritsimple.blogspot.com/2011/01/how-to-assemble-stacked-wedding-cake.html




Forum Matriarch... I like IT!

Great illustration! This is what I've been doing, but on non-crusting BC as soon as you touch the top cake to the bottom cake it sticks, or at least dents or gouges the buttercream on the bottom cake, especially when trying to get it center. Anyway, I can't wait to try the double board thing!

ToniRod Posted 2 Mar 2011 , 10:00pm

Googled 'cake lifter' as well, and it looks like there is quite a variety. Also, There are some that look quite different than others... Which ones do you all suggest?

CupcakeQT82 Posted 2 Sep 2012 , 11:43am

Marking . . . . .

leah_s Posted 2 Sep 2012 , 11:53am

And if you're using SPS, the support plate is already centered before you start to position the above tier. And yes, the the PP stated, you can actually slide your tier into place, perfectly centered, in seconds.

DeliciousDesserts Posted 2 Sep 2012 , 4:51pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by EvMarie

So - say you are stacking your tiers. And, you end up with some "dings". So...if you're cakes are iced & chilled & you have repairs. .... Doesn't it look bad to repair crusted buttercream?




I use crusted buttercream, but I don't use the VIVA method. I use water & a spatula. I take a mini bottle of water with me to help fix any dings & smudges. If there is a gap, I pipe some fresh frosting then smooth it with a bit of water. Sometimes I think I am better & repairing than the rest!

Also, I stack my system a bit differently. After I place the plates & columns in the tier, I come back & make the frosting level with the plate. This way there isn't as much of a gap between the tiers.

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